Differentiating Between ‘Cult’, ‘Cultic’ and ‘Spiritual Abuse’

by Cindy Kunsman cross posted from Under Much GraceWhat is the difference between "cult" and "cultic?" (Sociologically Speaking) It’s a matter of degree. Defining terms is vital.Concerning things "cultic" versus a "cult." If you’re the average guy (or gal) sitting in a church or a concerned significant other of someone in a group, the first thing you generally notice is that something bothers you about the group. This realization is true of any subtle deception or of insidious problems such as something wrong with your car. You hear an unfamiliar noise and the right side of your brain become sensitized and unconsiously starts putting things together (as a built in defense mechanism). … [Read more...]

Blame it on the Smurfs – Post-Tramatic Church Syndrome

by Suzanne TitkemeyerWhen I first cracked open my copy of Reba Riley's book, Post-Tramatic Church Syndrome I wasn't entirely sure what to expect. I figured it might be much like many of the series we feature here on No Longer Quivering: Girl/boy is immersed in a Quiverfull/Fundamentalist/Evangelical church and leaves for a long laundry list of reasons with a heavy burden of spiritual abuse and a heaping helping of depression only to be heckled/harassed/hounded by those well-meaning 'Good Christians' left behind. Usually the woman/man has a long road of healing with lots of twists, turns and tears before coming to a place that works on all levels for them. A sadder but wiser person. … [Read more...]

Spiritual Abuse – Recommended Reading

by Cindy Kunsman cross posted from her blog Under Much GraceAccording to the Spiritual Research Network, “spiritual abuse occurs when a leader, church or belief system – whether well intentioned or not – dominates, manipulates or castigates individuals through fear tactics, mind control or some other psychological or emotional abuse.”I believe that Jesus dealt with a great deal of this phenomenon and that the Pharisees were the spiritual abusers of His day. They are shepherds who use, manipulate or hurt the sheep for their purposes.This is a difficult thing to understand at first, especially if you are in a church and believe that your pastor or church leadership has subjected you … [Read more...]

Helpful Links For Recovering From Abuse

One of the things that has happened in the wake of Josh Duggar's sexual molestation coming to light has been that both NLQ Founder Vyckie Garrison and myself have started to discuss what is the best response, in what way can NLQ help those that have suffered from similar things, to promote healing and wholeness. One thing we came up with was a list of different types of organizations and people who offer help or information. This is our list. … [Read more...]

Know When To Walk Away, Know When To Run

by Ellen cross posted from her blog When Church HurtsI recently received a message on the Facebook page for When Church Hurts in which the writer asked if they should leave a church if no one cares whether or not they come back because they are seen as not contributing enough. The writer didn’t define what they meant by “contribute,” but it could mean any number of things – not enough money, time, energy, attendance, spiritual depth, etc. … [Read more...]

Post-Cult Trauma Syndrome

by Cindy Kunsman cross posted from her blog Under Much GraceAfter exiting a cult, an individual may experience a period of intense and often conflicting emotions. She or he may feel relief to be out of the group, but also may feel grief over the loss of positive elements in the cult, such as friendships, a sense of belonging or the feeling of personal worth generated by the group's stated ideals or mission. The emotional upheaval of the period is often characterized by "post- cult trauma syndrome": … [Read more...]

Why You Are The Problem

by Living Liminal cross posted from her blog Living LiminalIt was a few days before the meeting at which the board's official 'advice' was to be handed down to me. By this stage, it was pretty obvious what that advice would be. As they'd spent the past 3 weeks being 'unavailable' - far too busy doing 'important things' to talk to me - it didn't take a genius to work out I was being hung out to dry.I was sitting in the lounge room of elder R because I wanted to talk to him before I got officially shafted by the board. I was hoping (in vain!) that if I shared my concerns about the behavior of elder J and his wife, and the board members backing him, that he'd realize there was something … [Read more...]

Father Forgive Them…

by Living Liminal cross posted from her blog Living LiminalI was angry last night!The big, green, Incredible Hulk type of anger.This morning it's the quietly sickened and disgusted type.Why? … [Read more...]

Spock on Abuse

by Living Liminal cross posted from her blog Living LiminalSpock obviously understood how abusers operate: … [Read more...]

Quoting Quiverfull: Don’t Complain Ever Because God?

by Nancy Campbell of Above Rubies - You Are Destined For ThisIf you're even thinking about complaining about anything Nancy Campbell, Evangelical Cultural Enforcer, is poised above your head to hit you with a Biblical fly swatter and a reminder to shut up because it could be worse. Or maybe God had planned all this torment for you to 'refine' you or as a test. What type of all loving all knowing deity tortures people for no good reason? Because Bible! … [Read more...]


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